Its a World inside the world……!!!

Game Industry were introduced as a commercial entertainment medium in 1971, becoming the basis for a new entertainment industry in the late 1970s/early 1980s in the United States, Japan, and Europe. After a disastrous industry collapse in 1983 and a subsequent rebirth two years later, the video game industry has experienced sustained growth for over two decades to become an $11 billion industry, which rivals the motion picture industry as the most profitable entertainment industry in the world.

Obtaining a career in the video game industry used to a difficult thing because there were very few options and very few schools that could teach the required cutting edge skills, Specially if you are living in third world country. If you wanted to choose this path you had to be self taught. There were very few universities in western world who offer graduation in game industry related aspects. Today this dilemma has been turned upside down. You now have a plethora of schools to choose from and lots of programs and specialties to decide amongst.

The video game industry has changed over the past ten years. And it has matured. It is now a full-fledged industry. That means there are plenty of opportunities to find a rewarding career without being a hot-shot game designer or programmer. As a matter of fact the days of the hot shot developer are pretty much over. The creation of a state of the art video game now requires a dedicated team of employees with a wide range of skills and interests.

Posted by Rony at 2:35 PM, April 12, 2009

 

What women gamers want ?

A recent survey conducted by Games Researcher at The University of Wales, Newport, with chaired a panel of Game designers, programmers, independent researcher about what women gamers want in their game.

Firstly, it became clear that the games industry was largely populated c 10 years ago by the sort of men who people like Helen love to hate (being un-PC in every conceivable way it would seem), and has remained so – and they haven’t really had to change much because by and large their market was growing with them. Now however it is maturing and structurally an all male geek gamer industry is unable to make the stuff it needs to do to attract new audiences, so carries on making ever more expensive versions of what it already does.

The billion dollar question, of course, is what do women gamers want. Research so far has shown a few general principles about what women like in games:

(i) creativity – do it yourself, or at least some say in defining environments
(ii) being part of a non-competitive, collaborative system (some wags argue that social networks are really just games for women
(iii) using simple, easy to load and use games systems
(iv) tend to like non-zero sum games (ie everyone wins)
(v) are more likely to play casual, Java and Flash-powered web games like Bejeweled5, generally passing on download-install-and-play “hardcore” online world games like World of Warcraft.

Posted by Rony at 1:35 PM, April 12, 2009


Game Industry: departments

If you are interested in games, and want to know about the highest technical and talented field of this world (that is Games Industry), here are some Info that you might want to know: Well Game industry is not like any other industry of this world, its different and exclusive in any aspects. This combines the Technical and Art together. A contemporary computer game include advanced physics, artificial intelligence, 3D graphics, digitized sound, an original musical score, complex strategy and may use several input devices (such as mice, keyboards, gamepads and joysticks) and may be playable against other people via the Internet or over a LAN. Each aspect of the game can consume all of one programmer’s time and, in many cases, several programmers. Some programmers may specialize in one area of game programming, but many are familiar with several aspects. The number of programmers needed for each feature depends somewhat on programmers’ skills, but mostly are dictated by the type of game being developed.

The Heads that work 24/7 in a Game industry are:

Game designer

“‘Game designer’ is a broad spectrum of a single job,” says McShaffry, noting that designers are not just creative thinkers. Designers can have specialist jobs, like designing levels, or all-encompassing ones, directing different departments toward a single vision while playtesting, tweaking code, and helping to broker publishing deals on the side. Equally broad is the title game writer, a job that could involve creative duties, such as mapping out epic narratives, or more technical ones, like recording documentation. Typically, entry-level game developers—that is, people with no prior experience making games—rarely if ever are hired as game designers off the bat.A video or computer game designer develops the layout, concept and gameplay, the game design of a video or computer game. This may include playfield design, specification writing, and entry of numeric properties that balance and tune the gameplay. This person usually has a lot of writing experience and may even have a degree in writing or a related field. This person’s primary job function is writing, so the more experience they have with that activity, the better. Art and Programming skills are also required for this job now these days. In addition game designers often study relevant liberal arts such as psychology, sociology, drama, fine art or philosophy. Due to the increasing complexity of the game design process, many young game designers may also come from a computer science or other computer engineering background.

With game budgets now running into millions of dollars, the industry can often be volatile and a failed project could force a company into bankruptcy. So the design of the game is critical and the industry has been repeatedly criticized for choosing to develop sequels and licensed titles where sales are more certain, rather than investing in new game ideas. In larger companies entry level game designers will typically be given simpler tasks such as level design and object placement, while the role of lead designer will be reserved for a designer with more experience and a history of successful titles.

Some World famous Game Designers:

  • Danielle Bunten Berry, of the seminal M.U.L.E. and The Seven Cities of Gold
  • Marc Blank, co-designer of Zork, co-founder of text adventure publisher Infocom
  • Bill Budge, developer of Pinball Construction Set, designer who anchored launch of Electronic Arts
  • Chris Crawford, creator of Balance of Power and the founder of the Game Developer’s Conference
  • Jon Freeman, designer of the Archon series and many original Epyx titles
  • Richard Garriott (Lord British), developer of the Ultima series of games
  • Ron Gilbert, creator of Maniac Mansion and the Monkey Island series
  • Tomonobu Itagaki, creator of the Dead or Alive series, and the new Ninja Gaiden series
  • Hideo Kojima, creator of the Metal Gear Solid series
  • Jordan Mechner, designer of Prince of Persia, Karateka, and The Last Express
  • Sid Meier, creator of Civilization, Railroad Tycoon and other game series
  • Shinji Mikami creator of the Resident Evil series
  • Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda, Star Fox and Super Mario series’
  • Peter Molyneux, creator of the Populous, Black and White, Fable series, and Theme Park series
  • Brian Reynolds, developer of Civilization II, Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri and Rise of Nations
  • Warren Robinett, developer of Adventure, the first graphical adventure video game (and first instance of the Easter egg), and as the founder of The Learning Company
  • John Romero, creator of Wolfenstein 3D, the Doom and Quake series
  • Hironobu Sakaguchi, creator of the Final Fantasy series, Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey
  • Tim Schafer, creator of Grim Fandango and Psychonauts
  • Bruce Shelley, co-creator of Age of Empires series and Civilization
  • Warren Spector, developer of System Shock, Deus Ex and Thief series
  • Roberta Williams, designer of King’s Quest and several other computer game series
  • Will Wright, designer of SimCity, The Sims and Spore

Game Programmers:

Lead game programmer

The lead programmer is ultimately in charge of all programming for the game. It is their job to make sure the various submodules of the game are being implemented properly and to keep track of development from a programming standpoint. A person in this role usually transitions from other aspects of game programming to this role after several years of experience. Despite the title, this person usually has less time for writing code than other programmers on the project as they are required to attend meetings and interface with the client or other leads on the game. However, the lead programmer is still expected to program at least some of the time and is also expected to be knowledgeable in most technical areas of the game. There is often considerable common ground in the role of technical director and lead programmer, such that the jobs are often covered by one person.

Scripter

In early computer games, gameplay programmers would write code to create all the content in the game — if the player was supposed to shoot a particular monster, and a red key was supposed to appear along with some text on the screen, then this functionality was all written in C or assembly language by a gameplay programmer. These days, large game projects have a team of scripters to implement this sort of game content. Scripters usually are also game designers, and it is easier to find and employ a qualified game designer who can be taught a script language, as opposed to the difficulty of finding a qualified game designer who has mastered C++ on the target platform.

UI programmer

This programmer specializes in programming user interfaces (UIs) for games. Though some games have custom user interfaces, this programmer is more likely to develop a library that can be used across multiple projects. Most UIs look 2D, though contemporary UIs usually use the same 3D technology as the rest of the game so some knowledge of 3D math and systems is helpful for this role. Advanced UI systems may allow scripting and special effects, such as transparency, animation or particle effects for the controls.

Game physics programmer

A game’s physics programmer is dedicated to developing the physics a game will employ. Typically, a game will only simulate a few aspects of real-world physics. For example, a space game may need simulated gravity, but would not have any need for simulating water viscosity. Since processing cycles are always at a premium, physics programmers may employ “shortcuts” that are computationally inexpensive, but look and act “good enough” for the game in question. Sometimes, a specific subset of situations is specified and the physical outcome of such situations is stored in a record of some sort and is never computed at runtime at all. Some physics programmers may even delve into the difficult tasks of inverse kinematics and other motions attributed to game characters, but increasingly these motions are assigned via motion capture libraries so as not to overload the CPU with complex calculations. For a role-playing game such as Might and Magic, only one physics programmer may be needed. For a complex combat game such as Battlefield 1942, teams of several physics programmers may be required.

Game tools programmer

One of the less recognized members of the development team, the tools programmer can make game development heaven or unbearably difficult. Tools are used on almost every game for tasks such as scripting, importing or converting art, modifying behaviours or building levels. Some tools, such as an IDE, 3D graphics modelling software and Photoshop are COTS products, but many tools are specific to the game and are custom programmed. It is the tools programmer’s job to write the tools that handle these game-specific tasks. Some tools will be included with the game, but most will not. Most tools evolve with the game and can easily consume all of several programmers’ time. Well written and fairly bug-free tools make everyone’s development tasks easier. Poorly written or poorly documented ones can seriously hamper development and jeopardize the project. Due to time constraints, however, many tools are not carefully implemented.

Artificial intelligence programmer

Advanced artificial intelligence (AI) such as that found in Civilization III takes significant programming staff to develop. An AI programmer develops the logic the game uses to carry out a large number of actions. It has recently evolved into a specialized discipline, as these tasks used to be implemented by programmers who specialized in other areas. An AI programmer may program path finding, strategy and enemy tactic systems. This is one of the most challenging aspects of game programming and its sophistication is developing rapidly. According to Game Developer Magazine, many contemporary games dedicate sixty percent of their programming staff to AI. Some games, such as strategy games like Civilization III or role-playing games such as The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, use AI heavily, while others, such as puzzle games, use it sparingly or not at all. Many game developers have created entire languages that can be used to program their own AI for games via scripts. These languages are typically less technical than the language used to implement the game, and will often be used by the game or level designers to implement the world of the game. Many studios also make their games’ scripting available to players, and it is often used extensively by third party mod developers. Game AI programming should not be confused with academic AI programming and research: game programming has little use for developments in this area of study. Although both areas do borrow from each other from time to time, they are usually considered distinct disciplines.

Graphics programmer

Historically, this title usually belonged to a programmer who developed specialized blitter algorithms and clever optimizations for 2D graphics. Today, however, it is almost exclusively applied to programmers who specialize in developing and modifying complex 3D graphic renderers. Some 2D graphics skills have just recently become useful again, though, for developing games for the new generation of cell phones, PDAs and handheld game consoles.A 3D graphics programmer must have a firm grasp on advanced mathematical concepts such as vector and matrix math, quaternions and linear algebra.Programmers specializing in this area of game development can demand high wages and are usually a scarce commodity. Their skills can be used for computer games as well as games for game consoles such as the PlayStation 3, Wii and the Xbox 360.A 3D graphics programmer may also specialize in a subset of 3D graphics programming, such as pixel shaders or vertex shaders.

Game artist

A game artist is an artist who creates art for one or more types of games. Game artists are responsible for all of the aspects of game development that call for visual art. Game artists are often noted in role-playing games, collectible card games and computer and video games. Many game artists are called upon to development graphical treatments for the environments and elements in which role-playing games take place. For example, in the Monster Manual early Dungeons & Dragons artists created visual representations of monsters players might encounter while adventuring.

Many such depictions may influence subsequent art and the type of campaigns or adventures that developers and players create.Because role-playing games rely heavily on player’s imaginations, graphic illustrations can influence the appeal of the game. Therefore, as games become more popular, developers make a lot more money to art development to help continue to broaden the game’s appeal.Art for role-playing games can be expressed in a variety of media, from pencil drawings, to pen and ink illustrations, to oil paintings or even 3D models created with a computer. Therefore, no one skill set can be pinpointed as necessary for a role-playing game artist, beyond that of some artistic ability. Necessary skills will vary from game to game and developer to developer.In modern computer and video games, game artists create 2D art used as concept art, textures or 3D models and animations.Under the direction of an art director and game designer, they often design the look of the character through concept art and render them to be integrated into the game. They are also responsible for designing scenery, props, and any other visual effects in the game, like FMVs.The abilities of early home computers were so limited that having specialized personnel for art was unnecessary. Up until about the early 1990s, almost all art for video games were created by the game programmers. That art was simply created in code by specifying pixel colors and coordinates.

In recent times, dedicated video game artists make up a large part of many game development teams. Today, the ability of personal computers, software (such as 3D modelers) and video game consoles is so great that the number of game artists can far outstrip the number of any other group of the game development team, such as programmers and testers.

Posted by Rony at 12:35 AM, April 2, 2009